It’s been around eight years since Earth, Wind and Fire released their last album, which was nominated for a Grammy. (Illumination). And now, they’re set to go on tour for the latest studio release of, “Now, Then & Forever.”
“My good friend Larry Dunn, an American keyboardist, music director and one of the founding members of Earth, Wind & Fire, called me and ask if I would like to work with him on the music,” said Music Master Jon Barnes, from his recording studio this afternoon (Wed., Aug. 28, 2013).
Barnes recently returned from Europe at the daCarbo Jazz Festival (July 5-7 in Baernbach, next to Graz, Austria), with Arturo Sandoval and Skip Martin, former lead singer of Kool & The Gang. "It’s always an honor to work with legends like them," Barnes said.
Barnes is sponsored by Monster Cable and daCarbo, which makes carbon fiber trumpets. And speaking of carbon fiber, the new concept car bodies are nearly all made with the lightweight carbon fiber design. Barnes just returned from the Monterey Auto Week, Concours d’ Elegance, Pebble Beach, CA, where several hundred rare cars were displayed and sold for nearly $302 million according to the LA Times.
Concept cars like prototype Porsche 914 Spyder, with two electric motors and has been tested to go zero to 60 mph in 2.7 seconds. Other standouts made of carbon fiber were the new $4 million Lamborghini Veneno and Laraki Epitome. The Epitome concept car displayed at the event has 1,750 horsepower and will be one of only nine built with a price tag of $2 million each.
“I’ve never seen so many cool hybrids and automobiles in my life,” said Barnes. “I really enjoyed being Monster Cable’s Noel Lee’s guest at the event,” he noted. “By the way when Earth Wind & Fire were in the recording studio, Lee gave them signature Monster headphones.”
Barnes, who has played music when Earth, Wind & Fire were hot in the 1970's, is back in studio preparing for his October 1st performance and has other upcoming developments, including a music documentary, which was filmed during the tour and workshops in Europe.
Barnes said it took two years for Earth, Wind & Fire to finished the “Now, Then & Forever” album. And according to published reports, the album was started in Philip Bailey’s home. Bailey is an American R&B, soul, gospel and funk singer, songwriter, percussionist and actor, best known as one of the longtime members of the Earth, Wind and Fire band.
After he reportedly went back to listen to all of the Earth, Wind & Fire records, he then called keyboardist, Larry Dunn, one of the original members of the band, to help with the music. Dunn, along with other members of Earth, Wind & Fire were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2000.
"So it was really a great crew of people and a good process. Originally we were going to put it out last year, but we weren’t ready," Singer Philip Bailer said in a recent interview.